This year's Hoya Round the Island Race which is taking place this Saturday (16 June) will witness the second largest fleet in the race's 65-year history
This year’s Hoya Round the Island Race which is taking place this Saturday (16 June) will witness the second largest fleet in the race’s 65-year history with 1,735 yachts and over 13,000 people taking part. Known as the ‘London Marathon of Sailing’ for its sheer size, and pitting elite professional sailors against ‘fun-sailors’, Hoya Round the Island Race, which is organised by the Island SC, is one of the biggest and most popular races of its kind in the world.
There will be a selection of personalites taking part in the race including Royle Family and Heartbeat star Geoff Hughes who’ll be competing on his own yacht ‘Wayward’. Olympic silver medallist Ian Barker will be on board the Ultra 30 ‘Hoya’, while Olympic gold medallist Shirley Robertson will be sailing a Swan 48 ‘Jacobite’. Vendee Globe sailor, Josh Hall will be on board ‘Gartmore’ while top international yachtsman Eddie Warden Owen will be skippering the America’s Cup Class yacht ‘Hoya High Voltage’.
Annesley Wright, Managing Director of Hoya Lens UK said, “The race is a wonderful platform to show off Britain’s sporting nature. It is encouraging to see that so many, from professional yachtsmen and women to novices, have taken up the challenge this year. Hoya Lens UK is quite proud to have helped to nurture this very special event in the yachting calendar.”
The 50 nautical mile race, anticlockwise around the Isle of Wight, is held in high esteem within yachting circles and appeals to yachtsmen of hugely differing abilities and experience. At one end of the spectrum are the grand prix hi-tech boats crewed by professional yachtsmen and women of international standings. At the other, are the many small cruisers, often crewed by family and friends, for whom this is their only race of the year. In between, there are a multitude of classes and individual boats of all shapes and sizes.
The main trophy, highly coveted among British yachtsmen and women, is the Gold Roman Bowl, which is contested by yachts sailing under the IRC rating system. With at least 40 other classes and around 84 identifiable competitions within the overall race, there are over 50 prizes and trophies to be won.